A few months ago I shared about the record leavers, history makers and legacy makers in life. I would like to expand on that and share some insights on what distinguishes each one. In business we talk of strategic alignment. This is the extent to which all the various elements in a business are in line with the vision and mission of that business. Your life is very much like a business. To what extent are all the elements in your life aligned to your personal vision and goals? In this article I would like to share about the 3 kinds of alignment. Your life is ‘disaligned’, misaligned or aligned. To live a life that is maximized you need to be aligned. The point where your talents, actions, opportunities and divine destiny meet is the sweet spot of success. Many times because you are disconnected or misconnected life becomes such a struggle.
The Disalinged Life
The disaligned or disconnected life is one which is not driven by a vision. You are disconnected from your purpose, actions and have no consciousness of your destiny. Life has no meaning or purpose. You are completely disconnected from the purpose which your Maker wired you for. You are basically a hammer which is acting screw driver. A square peg in a round hole or a fish out of water. It is very important to understand your wiring. If you study space age mechanotrics and try a career in politics your political judgment might not project you as a great politician. I know of two professors who were brilliant as academics, but everything they touched with their political hands turned into a disaster.
It is presumptuous to assume that success in one area will necessarily translate into success in every other area. To be a legacy maker in life stick to the knitting. Have laser beam focus on the one thing you are uniquely wired for. Know your wiring. There is a difference between seizing an opportunity and opportunism. The former refers to an ability to exploit an opportunity that is aligned to your talents and destiny. The latter refers to grabbing an opportunity driven by sheer narrow mindedness or parochial greedy without any due regard for your own vision and the good of many. That is dangerous! If your life is disaligned any road will lead you there. There is no conscious and rationale evaluation of opportunities that come your way. Success is an accident. Failure is not a surprise.
The Misaligned Life
The misaligned life is one which while there is a vision, the methods and execution is at cross purposes with one another. You are like a battery with the terminals switched. There is power in the battery, and the objective is to give power is clear, but with the positive and negative terminals switched, nothing happens. Although you are working so hard, you experience burn out, because there is a ‘short’ somewhere.
In business if the Marketing department is highly innovative, but the Research and Development department is conservative, that is strategic misalignment. If you have a vision to be a great business person but you can’t read financial statements then you are misaligned. If you want to be amongst the top 10 professionals in the industry but you don’t improve your knowledge you will keep dreaming until retirement or redundancy. If you intend to build an investment portfolio, yet you don’t know how equity markets, long term investments and other marketable securities or real estate work, you need think again. Even start by buying penny stocks and graduate to blue chips. The point is your vision is a product of the collective actions which you do every single day. You cannot be a great preacher, if you don’t submit and allow great preachers to disciple and mentor you. A misaligned life is lived by hindsight and regret. The future remains a dangling carrot and life becomes a rat race or a dog chasing its tail. Instead of creating your future, time is wasted in rework and repair.
The Aligned Life
The aligned life is a life which is ‘in the zone’ or in the flow. Life ceases to be a struggle. Life is not happening to you, but you are happening to life. You do not see light at the end of the tunnel; you are the light in the tunnel. There is a congruency amongst your talents, vision, actions, opportunities and divine destiny. You are a round peg in a round hole. You are a wolf in wolf’s clothing. You are doing what you are cut out to do. This state is not achieved by accident or trial and error. The starting point is to know your wiring. What are the competencies and skills which make you uniquely different? Secondly, where is your life going, or what do you want to achieve in life? Thirdly, what activities must you do applying your skills to achieve your vision? Fourthly, which opportunities should you exploit in order to optimize or leverage your actions and talents to achieve your vision? Lastly, what has your Creator called you to accomplish in your generation? As you answer these questions, you discover the sweet spot of your success. There must a common thread cutting through your answers to make your life an aligned life. An aligned life is lived by insight and foresight. You create your future. Life is sweet and joyous. You find profit in all your labours. You have an assurance of success upon success.